Overseas Mission relationships
The Methodist Church of New Zealand has two primary partner church relationships:
Both are relationships of many years standing.
Project based funding
In 2002 we moved away from ‘block grants’ to ‘project based funding’. This shift makes mutual accountability an essential part of the relationship between the churches. It assists capacity building by the receiving church as the funding church works to help the other towards greater self reliance. When done well project based funding creates greater understanding and builds the partnership between the churches.
Providing scholarships helps to build the human skill base of the local church. We have assisted with theological and medical training for our partner churches
Mission and Ecumenical has entered into an ongoing commitment to pay the salary of the Chief Nursing officer at Helena Goldie Hospital, run by the Solomon Islands church in Munda. The CNO was formerly on a scholarship to gain a nursing degree in New Zealand. He now brings a whole new range of skills to the hospital and so for the benefit of the patients.
These provide the opportunity for individuals, church groups, and parishes to support particular needs. The 2002 appeal was for the purchase of 50 quality mattresses for Helena Goldie Hospital. The 2003 project wass for funds to enable the Rarongo Theological College in Rabaul, Papua New Guinea to purchase new books for its library.
Building church to church relationships
It is important that we build interpersonal relationships with our partner churches. So Mission and Ecumenical brought the Moderator of the United Church of the Solomon Islands, Philemon Riti and his wife Nancy, to New Zealand in November 2003. Together we reflected on several issues: how we develop the future relationship of our two churches; clarifying the areas we will work on together; reviewing our learnings from the past; identifying new ways we can work together; seeing how we can focus on mutual mission; considering how we can receive and not just give to the Church of the Solomon Islands. The Moderator of the United Church of Papua New Guinea, Samson Lowa and his wife Jessie will visit in november 2004.